What Does Memorial Day Mean to Kids?

Kids may think that Memorial Day is only about a day off from school, barbecues and parades, but with these picture books, you can introduce the meaning of this special holiday that honors people who have died in service to our country.

In Memorial Day Surprise, Pablo is watching for a surprise his mother told him would appear during the parade. The suspense builds as he tries to guess what the surprise is before it appears.

In The Wall, a young boy searches with his father for his grandfather's name on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. The story and illustrations are simple, somber and a great starting point for discussion as the father and son encounter a soldier missing his legs, piles of teddy bears and flags, and a crying elderly couple along the way.

Memorial Day combines the traditions of outdoor picnics and decorating soldiers' graves with a little history of the holiday. Images that may be used to spark discussion are one of Arlington National Cemetery and a flag at half-mast.

We welcome your respectful and on-topic comments and questions in this limited public forum. To find out more, please see Appropriate Use When Posting Content. Community-contributed content represents the views of the user, not those of Chicago Public Library